Paul’s Market Commentary
This time last year, we were only beginning to grasp the implications of COVID-19. A year later, and we have all learned to adapt to overcome the many challenges the pandemic has created.
Century Capital, along with other established lenders, demonstrated our resilience and adaptability as the wider lending market underwent a serious stress test, with access to funding lines becoming more challenging and loan repayment strategies thrown into disarray. The certainty in the market that we had become accustomed to evaporated overnight.
At Century, we are both an established business and agile one. Having been in the bridging business for over 10 years, we have maintained an excellent track record with no losses to date. During the pandemic, we adapted by introducing new products and processes including our super-fast completion process. These have proved popular amongst our network of reputable and established brokers and borrowers that require instant access to capital.
We have established our position as the lender of choice for clients in need of quick access to funding, with a common-sense lead approach to our lending decisions, with funding available across a diverse range of property types. With substantial funds available for deployment and a 10-year track record, we demonstrated resilience in the face of adversity and maintained our reputation as a trusted lender that never lets our clients down.
CEO, Century Capital
1. Corporation tax will increase to 25%
To balance the need to raise revenue with the objective of having an internationally competitive tax system, the rate of corporation tax will increase to 25%, which will remain the lowest rate in the G7. In order to support the recovery, the increase will not take effect until 2023,’ Chancellor Rishi Sunak said.
2. Furlough has been extended.
The Furlough Scheme will be extended until the end of September by the chancellor in the Budget later. Rishi Sunak said the scheme – which pays 80% of employees’ wages for the hours they cannot work in the pandemic – would help millions through “the challenging months ahead”. Some 600,000 more self-employed people will also be eligible for government help as access to grants is widened.
3. Seiss Extended
The Government announced that the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) would be extended again. But there are important deadlines relating to the first and second grants this month – act fast if these affect you.
4. Stamp Duty Cut Extension
Rishi Sunak has announced an extension of the stamp duty holiday until the end of June in the budget with lower rates until the end of September. This will be welcomed by those buying a home who have been very worried about having to pay up to £15k extra on their purchase if they don’t complete in time. The extension will likely cause another mini-surge of activity as buyers and sellers rush to take advantage of the savings.
5. Backing Home Buyers
The Budget has brought good news for homebuyers. The government is launching a mortgage guarantee scheme to allow lenders to accept 5% deposits. NatWest, Barclays and HSBC are among the large lenders on board. It will launch on April 2021 for properties under £600,000 and lenders must offer a five-year fixed rate as an option. It is open to all homebuyers, not just first-time buyers, however, those buying to let and those purchasing second homes are excluded. The scheme will end in December 2022.